Five reasons young adults need to be a member of a local church

Josh Mauldin
FBC, Fayetteville

Too often today we see young adults taking a hiatus from the local church. Sometimes we see them walk away completely from the faith. Scripture has some things to tell us about the importance of not only attending but investing in the local church. The following are some of the reasons God’s Word tells us that it is important to be in a local church.

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How to talk to your children about sex

Ben Phillips
Arkansas Baptist State Convention 

Christian parents are losing the battle on all fronts in the cultural war on sex and the casualties are their children, grandchildren, and future generations. Children hear a few messages from parents and the church and an overwhelming number of messages from the media, friends, and school. Instead of parents having “the talk,” they must have “multiple talks” with their children to equip their children with a biblical worldview regarding sexuality.

The book of Proverbs illustrates the example of parents teaching children 27 times, primarily the father teaching his son, providing a model for parents. Included in Proverbs are examples of a father taking initiative to warn and guide his son to make wise choices in the sexual arena of his life. Proverbs devotes almost three entire chapters to this subject in 2:16-20, 5:1-23, 6:20-29, 7:1-27. The repetition of these references emphasizes the continuous role of parents frequently teaching their children in the home to walk the right path.

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How to address human trafficking issues in your church

Debbie Moore
Arkansas Baptist State Convention

Like the priest in the Good Samaritan story, we would rather avert our eyes and pretend not to see some things. Human trafficking is one of those things. We want to believe that slavery, child labor, sex trafficking, and human trafficking are exaggerations or nonexistent. However, human trafficking is occurring across the globe and yes, even in Arkansas. How can we stop this problem?

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On Mission: Summer mission involvement ideas for your family

Charity Gardner
Arkansas Baptist State Convention

Summer is the season known for camps, swimming pools and no school! This season, try to take advantage of spending time with your family. Time can be spent together in many ways. Here are some teachable moment ideas for the whole family.

GardnerTake a family vacation. While planning a family vacation, be intentional about stopping by an inner city mission center or taking time to visit a missionary along the way. Be sure to contact the missionary before leaving for vacation. Ask the missionary if there are needs your family could assist with in their ministry. As a part of the vacation, allow time to visit with the missionary, to hear about their ministry and maybe even work alongside the missionary.

Adopt a local park to clean during the summer. Your family could plan a children’s activity once a week in the park. Be sure to get permission for the children’s activity. What a way to spend quality time with the family and a wonderful way to get to know neighbors and the community. The possibility of learning about a family that needs a church family is likely.

Start a Backyard Bible Club. This will provide time for your family to get to know neighbors and the community but also introduce children and their families to simple Bible stories.

Invite a child of a missionary (missionary kid) to spend the week with your family in your home. Missionary kids spend time away from their family once they reach college. Take a missionary kid on a tour of your local historical sites, natural sites (parks, mountains, rivers) and fun tourist sites. Provide time when the missionary kid can share with your family about themselves and their culture. 

Summer can be full of excitement and fun for family and friends. Make the most of the time with your family and be intentional in planning activities.

Charity Gardner is a member of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention (ABSC) missions support team. Email her at for information about missions equipping and mobilizing for students. This article originally appeared at


Evangelism Conf. Jan. 21-22 features Luter

SHERWOOD – Fred Luter, the first African-American to be elected president of the Southern Baptist Convention, is among a host of national and Arkansas speakers to be featured Jan. 21-22 during the 2013 State Conference on Evangelism and Church Growth.

The theme of the event is Reaching Across Arkansas and will be held at First Baptist Church, 701 Country Club Road, Sherwood.

“We are blessed with a tremendous lineup of speakers and worship leaders this year,” said Sonny Tucker, the newly elected executive director of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention (ABSC).

Tucker said the conference “first and foremost is to fan the fires for evangelism, revival, prayer, soul winning and church growth/health.” 

“(Another) goal of this conference is to encourage the pastors, staff and lay leaders who attend. God has placed an unbelievably gifted and committed group of people in our state to lead our churches and associations,” Tucker added. “My prayer is that you go back to your ministry task inspired and renewed. I operate from a deep belief that because God called you He plans to use you to accomplish great things for Him.”

In addition to Luter, keynote speakers are David Burton, Junior Hill, Ed Newton, Robert Smith, Sammy Tippit, Bill Tolar and Emil Turner.  

  • Luter, pastor of Franklin Avenue Baptist Church, New Orleans, was elected as the first African-American president of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) during its 155th session held in New Orleans in June 2012. Luter grew Franklin Avenue from 65 people in a white-flight neighborhood to a congregation of more than 8,000 prior to the devastation of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. He emphasizes “FRANgelism” (Friends Relatives Associates Neighbors) as a strategy for reaching thousands in the city.
  • Burton is the evangelism team leader for the Florida Baptist Convention. He has the responsibility of overseeing personal evangelism, collegiate ministries and prayer/spiritual awakening.
  • Hill has been a Southern Baptist evangelist since 1967. He has authored 11 books and has preached more than 1,500 revivals and crusades, including a number of revivals in Arkansas.
  • Newton is a vocational evangelist based in Memphis, Tenn. In addition to itinerant preaching, he serves as the staff evangelist at Faith Baptist Church, Bartlett. Newton was the featured speaker at 2012 Super Summer in Arkansas.
  • Smith is a conference teacher and speaker who serves as professor of Christian preaching at Beeson Divinity School in Birmingham, Ala. He previously served in a similar capacity at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky.
  • Tippit is an international evangelist and author who has preached to hundreds of thousands in more than 80 countries in the last 40 years. He has also done extensive work in men’s and family ministries.
  • Tolar is a retired distinguished professor of biblical backgrounds at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, where he taught for 38 years. He has trained thousands of ministers and laymen, spoken in 53 countries and on five continents and served as interim pastor in 50-plus churches.
  • Turner served as executive director of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention from 1996 to 2012, during which the state increased its number of baptisms and church plants. He has served as pastor in Louisiana and Arkansas churches.

StottsWorship will be led by Jeff Stotts and the worship team from Central Baptist Church, Jonesboro. Stotts has been the lead worship pastor for Central Baptist since 2005.  He has served churches in Arkansas and Oklahoma. 

Exhibits of ABSC and related ministries will be set up at the church, and a LifeWay Christian Bookstore will be on hand. Childcare is not provided.

For more information, contact Karen West at 800-838-2272, ext. 5128, or by email at

View the conference program in PDF format here.


Monday Afternoon - 1-4:30 p.m.

Bill Tolar
Ed Newton
Robert Smith

Monday Evening - 6:30-9 p.m.

David Burton
Junior Hill

Tuesday Morning - 8:45-Noon

Sammy Tippit
Emil Turner
Fred Luter

Related Meetings:

Prayer Network Leadership Meeting – 10-11:45 a.m., Monday, First Baptist Church, Sherwood. Lunch provided by the ABSC Prayer Ministry. RSVP to Gwen McCallister at or call 800-838-2272, ext 5103.

Associational Missionaries and Directors of Evangelism Lunch – 11:15 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., Monday, Golden Corral, 5001 Warden Road, North Little Rock.

Ministers Wives Fellowship  3 p. m., Monday, First Baptist Church, Sherwood.  

ASPN Arkansas Student Pastors’ Network – 4:45 p.m., Monday. Speaker: Ed Newton. David’s Burgers, 3510 Landers Rd, North Little Rock.

Vocational Evangelists Dinner and Fellowship. 4:45 p.m., Monday. Full-time and part-time evangelists and spouses, Golden Corral, 5001 Warden Road, North Little Rock.


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